Operational Bulletin 528 – August 29, 2013

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by IRCC staff. It is posted on the department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

Sponsorship undertakings submitted in support of Applications for Permanent Residence in Canada based on Humanitarian and Compassionate Considerations


While sponsorship undertakings have traditionally been accepted with in-Canada Humanitarian and Compassionate (H&C) applications, the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) and Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR) only provided specific authority to require and enforce sponsorship undertakings for Refugees and for the Family Class. The Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act (PCISA) introduced legislative amendments to IRPA allowing regulations to be drafted to enforce other undertakings. This Operational Bulletin (OB) describes the rationale for not implementing sponsorship regulations for H&C applications and explains modest changes to processing current H&C applications that include sponsorship undertakings.


Consideration has been given to whether regulations to enforce H&C undertakings should be developed. Sponsorship regulations would require a more formal assessment and consistency in application of the regulations across regions, resulting in more work for H&C decision makers and an increase in processing time. Given the significant decline in H&C sponsorship applications in recent years and the potential operational burden related to implementing sponsorship regulations, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) will  no longer request or assess sponsorship undertakings in support of in-Canada H&C applications.

Operational impact:   

  • CIC will no longer enter sponsorship information in the Field Operations Support System (FOSS) when an H&C application is accompanied by a sponsorship/undertaking (IMM 1344). This eliminates the need to create the sponsorship information screen (Y screen) in FOSS. At this point in time, the HC2 line of business will not be created in the Global Case Management System (GCMS).
  • All new H&C applications will now be coded as HC1.
  • For existing H&C applications where the sponsorship decision has not been made and the Y screen has been created, decision makers are no longer required to assess the eligibility of the sponsor to sponsor the applicant. The Y screen should be left as “pending” and the case should remain under the HC2 code. The following comment is required in these “Y” screens: this sponsorship request is attached to an H&C application; no decision will be made on the sponsorship.
  • If a Y screen has already been created and approved there is no need to change it, just ensure that a comment is added into the Y screen: this sponsorship was approved pursuant to an H&C application.
  • For all existing HC2 stage two applications it is no longer necessary to include comments in the Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR) documents referring to the sponsorship.
  • Decision makers will continue to consider the existence of the sponsorship as a factor in the assessment of the permanent residence application. However, the sponsorship has no greater value than a letter from a family member attesting to his/her willingness to support the applicant. How much weight it is afforded in the overall H&C application is at the discretion of the decision maker. 
  • EXCEPTION: For cases currently before the Ministère de l’Immigration et des Communautés Culturelles (MICC) i.e., where the transmittal slip has been forwarded to MICC before the publication of this OB, these cases will continue to be processed under the existing HC2 procedures.
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